Boeing launches Starliner astronaut capsule on unmanned test mission

The Spacecraft The Atlas V rocket, launched from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Space Station, took off at 6:54 pm on Thursday. After launching the rocket capsule into orbit, the spacecraft exerted its own impulses to propel it in the right direction. Boeing officials confirmed Starliner’s “orbital insertion” – a sign that the spacecraft was on track – about half an hour later. The Starliner will fly freely for about 24 hours before arriving at the space station, where it is scheduled to communicate slowly, docking with the station. It will be less than a week.
Starliner has proven to be a tough project for Boeing, which initially believed the spacecraft would be operational in 2017. Affected by delays and growth barriers. The first attempt at this test flight, known as the OFT-1, was reduced in 2019 due to a problem with Starliner’s internal clock. This error caused the thrusters in the capsule to burn incorrectly and knock it out, and the authorities decided. Bring the spacecraft home Rather the mission must continue. It took more than a year to get rid of that problem and other software issues.
Most recently, there was Starliner The valve went awry due to problems. When the spacecraft was sent to the launch site in August 2021, a pre-flight test revealed that the main valves were stuck in place, and engineers were unable to fix the problem immediately.

Eventually the capsule had to be rolled off the launch pad. When the engineers were unable to repair it on the spot, it had to be taken to Boeing’s factory for complete repair.

Valves have become a source of constant controversy for the company. According to a recent report from ReutersAlabama-based Aerojet Rocketine, a subcontractor that manufactures valves, has been at odds with Boeing over the root cause of the valve problem.

Boeing and NASA disagree, according to NASA officials during a recent press conference.

See also  UN inspectors visit the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine

Their investigation indicated that moisture was coming into the valves and causing “corrosion” and “bonding”, Boeing vice president and Starliner project manager Mark Nappy told a news conference last week. This led the company to develop a short-term solution that developed a cleaning system that included a small bag, which was designed to prevent corrosion-causing moisture. NASA and Boeing claim to be comfortable with this solution.

NASA’s Business Team Project Manager Steve Stitch said last week, “We are in a good position to fly that system.

But that is not the end. Boeing revealed last week that it would eventually have to redesign the valves.

“We want to do a little more testing and, based on those results, we’ll make sure what kind of changes we make in the future,” Nabby said. “We’ll find out more in the coming months.”

It is unclear how long it will take or further delay Boeing’s first space flight if progress is made with a comprehensive redesign of Boeing valves, at which point, planning is several years behind schedule. According to public documents, the hangover with Starliner will cost the company half a billion dollars.

Meanwhile, SpaceX, once considered a backward competitor in NASA’s Commercial Crew program, has already launched five space missions and two cruises for NASA. The launch of its vehicle, the Crew Dragon, became the first spacecraft to launch astronauts from American soil into orbit since the space shuttle program retired in 2011.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.